Broken Bells - Marquee Theatre - 4/10/2014
The biggest clue to the mysterious futuristic plot comes from the lyric of the band's final song before their encore, the popular "The High Road." Mercer sings with melancholy that he doesn't "know of the dead can talk to anyone," perhaps referring to the fate of the astronaut's girlfriend. As the three female members of the opening band Au Revoir Simone hauntingly sang backup, it was apparent that her spirit talks to and inspires Burton and Mercer.
If Broken Bells was accused of hijacking disco for their new album, Au Revoir Simone stole the best of new wave with their synthesizers. The favorite band of director David Lynch moved onstage under purple lights behind their Casios and drum machine as if they were performing at the dreariest prom ever. It was the smiles on their face that proved to the audience otherwise as they danced and swayed to their three-part harmonies and peppy keyboards. It appeared they had broken free from the dark film director's grip and discovered even Siouxsie and the Banshees had fun once in a while. Au Revoir Simone's closing song, the early hit "Shadows," served as a reminder of their dark past.
Last Night: Broken Bells/Au Revoir Simone at the Marquee
Personal Bias: I thought the self-titled debut album of Broken Bells was interesting but would not endure. I never thought there would be a second album or a tour.
The crowd: College kids, hipsters, and the frosted tips of Scottsdale youth
Overheard in the Crowd: "Is that from their Washington show?" -- drunk guy attempting to compliment me on my Radiohead shirt. It was from Chicago.